Where are your business leads really coming from online? Do you know? For a lot of local businesses the majority of phone calls and overall lead opportunities are actually generated from their Google My Business listing. This is especially true on mobile where consumers are looking for the path of least resistance to find the information they need or get in touch with a local business. Google continues to make updates to the knowledge panel so that more of your business information is available straight from the search engine results page. Consumers can find the essentials like your phone number, directions, reviews, business amenities, services, and with recent updates you can even include a business description up to 750 characters. If all the information your customers need is available right from the knowledge panel then what do they need your website for?
Is My Website Dead Weight?
It’s true that a small business website isn’t quite as essential as it used to be and a lot of your lead conversions are occurring before a customer even visits your site. However, to say that your website is irrelevant would be a big mistake. Even though more people are contacting local businesses before they’ve visited the website it’s certainly not everyone and your website is still key to building trust with your audience. According to an infographic from Neil Patel 68% of consumers say they feel more confident about a brand after consuming content from it. Your website may be down but it’s certainly not out!
What’s The Right Strategy For My Business?
To start if you don’t already have a Google My Business listing verified for your business I would drop whatever you’re doing and make that your next priority. I’d suggest adding all the relevant information you can to your listing and make sure you’ve chosen the best category for your business. Reviews are also extremely important to local business success so having a strategy to generate new reviews for not only Google but other key review platforms in your industry is a best practice.
On your website you’ll want to make sure you have quality original content to overview your products and services, a descriptive about page, and an easy to navigate layout that looks great particularly on mobile. Writing quality content that delivers value to your audience and answers their questions is also a big asset.
Beyond that, a lot of the same principles I’ve written about before still apply when it comes to maximizing local seo visibility and revenue opportunities. The landscape may be changing but local businesses that stay up to date with their strategy will continue to succeed.